MOXI Leadership Participates in Capitol Hill Maker Faire
Two of MOXI’s senior leadership team have returned from a trip to Washington, D.C. to take part in the 4th annual Capitol Hill Maker Faire as a part of the National Week of Making. Robin Gose, president and CEO of MOXI participated in a panel session titled “Museums and Libraries Taking Making into the Community,” open to members of Congress, staffers and interested members of the public. She highlighted a maker outreach program she oversaw at her prior employer, Thinkery in Austin, Texas, as well as making opportunities at MOXI. The Faire was hosted by Nation of Makers and theInstitute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) in collaboration with the Congressional Maker Caucus as a part of the National Week of Making (June 21-27).
“It is crucial that our nation’s leaders understand the lasting and widespread impact that making programs can have on a community. Learning how to use a new tool, experimenting with varied materials and constructing designs within limitations help children develop perseverance and resiliency as well as critical thinking and creativity,” said Gose. “It was an honor to share my experiences as an educator and museum administrator and I hope that IMLS funding can continue to help expand and grow maker education opportunities in communities across the country.”
The Faire celebrated and explored the many facets of the Maker movement driven by engineers, hobbyists, tinkerers, crafters, artists, entrepreneurs and innovators and its impact on education through inquiry-based learning as well as our nation’s communities, businesses and economy. MOXI also hosted a table in the evening Faire session alongside more than 40 organizations including federal agencies, museums, schools, universities, libraries, nonprofits, businesses and more from across the country. Sean O’Brien, MOXI’s director of exhibits, staffed the table and introduced attendees to MOXI’s many making programs including the activities in the Innovation Workshop, the museum’s makerspace open to all guests.
Sean O'Brient and Robin Gose
O’Brien invited attendees to contribute to a collaborative 3-D sculpture by writing an answer to the prompt, “What does making mean to you?” on an acrylic disc that could then be connected to other discs. The resulting sculpture will be hung in the Innovation Workshop at MOXI as an artifact of the trip and reminder to museum guests that making can mean many different things.
MOXI was the only organization from California which participated in this special event designed to highlight the importance of supporting and fostering making programs and education initiatives. IMLS is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. MOXI does not currently receive support from IMLS, though it was awarded its first federal funding last year through a grant from the National Science Foundation.
This summer, MOXI is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. The Innovation Workshop is open Wednesday – Monday, 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and Tuesdays, 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. A variety of activities are offered every day, with themes changing monthly. Themes which will be explored in the Workshop include playing with scale in June, handicrafts in July, and digital creativity in August.
MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation® is dedicated to igniting learning through interactive experiences in science and creativity. Located in the heart of Santa Barbara’s redeveloped tourist area at 125 State Street, the museum is LEED-certified Gold and serves guests of all ages through its hands-on exhibits and education programs. MOXI is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization generously supported by its daily guests, members, facility rentals and. For more information, visitmoxi.org.